Tearing down fortresses of false beliefs

Tearing down fortresses of false beliefs

If you return to me, I will restore you so you can continue to serve me. If you speak good words rather than worthless ones, you will be my spokesman. You must influence them; do not let them influence you! – Jeremiah 15:19

2 Corinthians 10:3-5

 3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh,

 4 We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds (fortresses) of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments.

 5 We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.

Upon reflection, we realize that we are often prisoners of our past. Frequently, our present is not only informed but also controlled by our history. As we review our past, we recall many disappointments and failures, poor decisions, and consequences. Our history, along with subconscious insults and traumas to our souls, can be recalled and dealt with.

What are we to do? Our trials and frustrations can become the stepping stones and foundation of a better present and a more fulfilling future.

Life is a journey, and we must make the best of it. “Your journey will be much lighter and easier if you don’t carry your past with you (Anonymous).”

“The past cannot be changed, forgotten, edited, and or erased. It can only be accepted” (Anonymous).

“Every pain gives a lesson, and every lesson changes a person” (Anonymous).

“Forget the mistake. Remember the lesson” (Anonymous).

“The past is meant to teach you, and the hard times are meant to strengthen you” (Anonymous).

“Never be a prisoner of your past. It was just a lesson, not a life sentence” (Anonymous).

Modern counseling and psychology offer a great deal of advice on developing life strategies for overcoming former times by learning to “take out the garbage.”

The Scriptures are replete with sound advice from the Father on how to carry this out. The real enemy is not visible but invisible. The struggle we face is not fleshly but spiritual. The Father has given us supernatural weapons to fight.

2 Corinthians 10:3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh.

We are to separate what is essential from what is superficial and superfluous. We focus on the wheat and discard the chaff.

Jeremiah 15:19 You extract the precious from the worthless, You will become My spokesman.


“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.” Mother Theresa


Paul advocates waging a spiritual battle with the Father’s mighty weapons to identify and knock down strongholds, fortresses of human reasoning, and false beliefs.

2 Corinthians 10:4-5

 4 We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds (fortresses) of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments.

 5 We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.

Physical fortresses in the ancient world were typically made out of bricks. Spiritual strongholds are made out of spiritual bricks. These bricks have been referred to as basic life beliefs. Basic life beliefs are what we believe, whether true or false. We live out what we believe.

Proverbs 23:7 For as he thinks within himself, so he is.

As we change what we believe, our basic life beliefs, our thoughts, and actions change.

Where do our basic life beliefs come from? They tend to be caught rather than taught when we are young children. They are often programmed by our society, our families, or the influences of our socialization. The mastermind, the strategist behind our programming, is the enemy of our souls; consequently, much of what we believe is lies.

The Father has provided a remarkable process that allows us to rid ourselves of the lies we believe. We begin by identifying these false beliefs and the triggering events that opened us up to accept them. This often comes through prayer, reading the Scriptures, or the wise, godly intervention of spiritual counselors.

Once we identify a lie, we find a corresponding truth in the word of God that should be believed instead. Through an act of the will, we exchange the truth of God’s Word for the lies we believe. We discard false beliefs and replace them with the Truth. In other words, we pluck out the false belief, the brick that the enemy has implanted, and replace it with a biblically-based brick from the truth of the Word of God.

For example, suppose we believe the lie that we are unlovable and unacceptable. We research the Scriptures for an appropriate truth to exchange for false belief. Below are two Scriptures related to being loved and accepted.

Ephesians 1:6 He has made us accepted in the beloved. (KJV)

Jeremiah 31:3 I have loved you, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love, I have drawn you to myself.

Like it or not, the enemy has declared war on the children of the King. We are at war. It is a battle of the mind. The Father has given us all the power we need to fight this war effectively. His power takes captive and demolishes strongholds and fortresses. Strongholds are anything we rely upon for security, self-esteem, or survival.

The Greek term translated as strongholds or fortresses is ochuroma. Ochuroma is found only in 2 Corinthians 10:4. Outside of the New Testament is used in both a literal and figurative way. Military strongholds provided “the imagery used in Cynic and Stoic philosophers, and in particular by Seneca, a contemporary of Paul, to describe the fortification of the soul by reasonable arguments to render it impregnable under the attack of adverse fortune” (Kruse). These “mental walls” fortify people against the invasion of the Truth, and ultimately the knowledge of God (Wiersbe).

The enemy uses lies, false information, and speculations to contradict the truth of the Word of God. The enemy implants his false belief system in our hearts. It is up to us to identify and extract our false basic life beliefs. (bible.org/seriespage/lesson-8-tearing-down-walls-2-corinthians-101-18).

The weapons the Father has provided allow us to “put an end to the strength of the enemy” or “tear down defenses that are difficult to destroy” (UBS).

2 Corinthians 5:21 For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.

In the same way we exchange our sin for God’s righteousness, we also exchange our false beliefs with the Truth. As we learn and hide the Scriptures in our hearts, we consciously replace our false beliefs with His Truth.


© Dr. H 2022

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